The mission of the Deaf Studies program is to improve the lives of Deaf people globally by training students to facilitate communication between sign language users and spoken language users and to advocate and promote equity and equality within society. The program provides students with a well-rounded understanding of Deaf people’s language and culture. Students will learn to appreciate the human diversity within the local and global Deaf community, including but not limited to various stakeholders who identify as Deaf, hard of hearing, DeafBlind, and Deaf+.
Students can also choose to have a minor (18 credits) in American Sign Language.
These options allow students greater flexibility in choosing a career path best suited to their strengths and interests. Students complete the degree through remote learning. Upon completing the program, graduates will possess the entry-level skills necessary to work as an advocate in community services or as an interpreter in various settings and be prepared to pursue graduate studies in a related discipline.
Language and Pedagogy Philosophy
The Deaf Studies Faculty agree with the extensive research that suggests language and culture are acquired through interaction with native and fluent language models. The Deaf Studies Program is committed to using a bilingual approach which aligns with the culture, language and discourse within the Deaf community. Our remote program provides students with interactive experiences to learn the foundational skills needed to be a proficient communicator in American Sign Language. Additionally, students are encouraged to utilize every learning opportunity to increase their fluency in American Sign Language through daily application, communication, and involvement in the Deaf community.